Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!

This is my friend, Deville (my brother's sweet Bull Mastiff). I can remember when he was a little puppy and I could pick him up and hold him in my arms. That was obviously many, many months and pounds ago. His face is now the size that his entire body was when I first met him. I can't hold Deville anymore, but I'll always think of him as Little Nilly Devilly.

This picture of the ever handsome Deville is my analogy of the changes that happen over time and is so apparent to me at Christmastime.

When I was a kid I loved Christmas. And I mean LOVED it. I would certainly have named it my favorite day of the year. I always had tons of presents, and I loved having both of my grandmothers over for the eve and day. I loved decorating Christmas cookies with Mom. I loved watching all the Christmas shows and singing all the songs. I loved going to visit Santa and writing a little note to him each year. And I loved driving around in the car with my family looking at Christmas lights.

As I became a young adult, some of the traditions changed but still, I loved Christmas. Back in the early 90's, my husband/my then-boyfriend started spending Christmas with our family. My sister who moved to Seattle many years ago would always come in town with her family. I looked so forward to seeing her and my brother-in-law and my cute niece and nephew. Christmas just became bigger. We started a Gingerbread House contest in my family that became a pretty huge competition and something we thought about for weeks in advance. In the early years of the contest, we built houses, but eventually we built cathedrals, and even great cities! Mom continued to buy us all tons of gifts and there was always so much under the tree! I have to admit, I loved getting gifts. As I grew up, I learned to give them, too.

And now, here I am in 2009. Like I have since Mom died, I'll be going out of town for Christmas. I'll be out of town, and it won't even feel like Christmas morning. It will just be my dad, my brother, Fermin, and me. My sister's family has grown up and there's been some separations so we won't see them this year. There isn't a tree this year, and there aren't loads of gifts under it. And the most obvious and profound--- Mom's no longer here to make it all feel like the good ol' days.

Ah, transitions... We're still trying to figure it all out.
I like to think it's like growing up- There are some awkward stages, some years are better than others, but ultimately, your striving to be better, and to be wiser.

Maybe next year we'll all be ready to stay home for the holidays, because as the song says, there's no place like home for the holidays. Maybe we can get back to the gingerbread houses, and some of those other traditions we had to set aside for a few years. I think I'll be ready to get back into the Christmas spirit next year.

Don't cry for me, Argentina or anyone else! I know I'm still very lucky- and I'm lucky to get to be going on a trip with my little family this year. I just hope Christmas gets a little bigger next year...

1 comment:

fleetwood said...

Great. Especially the lead in with DeVille. What a cute pic of "The King".